The battle royale genre has skyrocketed in popularity within the industry, making many players wonder about what is the first battle royale game ever to be made. It features games where a large number of players, often around 100, control characters parachuting onto a virtual map, fighting until only one remains. With modes for solo play or teaming up, it’s a diverse gaming experience.
Battle royale games blend survival and scavenging, starting players with minimal equipment, prompting them to gather loot, and engage in combat. Staying within the shrinking “safe zone” is crucial to being the last one standing. Some games add unique twists, like reviving teammates or special character abilities.
What is the first battle royale game that was made?
The term “battle royale” traces back to the 2000 Japanese film Battle Royale, depicting characters fighting for survival. The game format of battle royale emerged about a decade ago, initially as mods for games like Minecraft. Mods like Survival Games, inspired by The Hunger Games, gained traction. The concept spread to titles like DayZ and Arma III. Notably, Z1’s mod led to the creation of H1Z1, considered the answer to the question of what is the first battle royale game, as the first standalone game in the genre.
Below, you can check out the pioneering titles that helped the emergence of the genre on its own.
PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds (PUBG)
PUBG, released in March 2017, is a pivotal game in the battle royale genre. It sold two million copies within months of its early access launch, surging to 50 million units by June 2018. While not the first standalone battle royale, PUBG’s intense gameplay and expansive maps set a new standard. Brandon Greene, its creator, blended web design and coding skills, drawing inspiration from online mods and the cult classic film Battle Royale. His vision led to a game that defined the genre and inspired a wave of successors. PUBG remains a cornerstone in gaming history.
Fortnite: Battle Royale
Fortnite: Battle Royale revolutionized the genre with its free-to-play model and introduced unique mechanics. Players can construct their own fortifications, adding a Minecraft-like building element to the gameplay. Beyond that, the game is known for engaging in-game events, pop culture references, frequent content updates, and a rewarding mastery curve. Alongside PUBG, Fortnite played a pivotal role in propelling the battle royale genre to new heights.
In stark contrast to traditional battle royale settings, Fall Guys brings a colorful and lighthearted twist. Up to 60 players control jellybean-like creatures, competing in randomly selected mini-games like soccer, tag, and obstacle races. Its whimsical approach offers a refreshing departure from the intense battlegrounds of other titles, providing a fun-filled experience for players of all ages.
Spellbreak transports players into a fantastical world, substituting firearms for magic spells. With a rich array of buffs and debuffs at your disposal, the game introduces a unique dynamic to the battle royale genre. Players must master the art of spellcasting, changing the way spells function, in order to emerge as the last sorcerer standing in this visually stunning fantasy realm.
Call of Duty: Warzone
Drawing heavily from the established mechanics and gameplay of the renowned Call of Duty series, Warzone places a premium on skill and teamwork. Players need to delve into the intricacies of weapons, attachments, perks, and mechanics to gain the upper hand. It’s a high-stakes, adrenaline-fueled battle royale experience that demands tactical prowess and collaboration to come out on top.
Apex Legends made waves in the genre by introducing a nonverbal ping system, revolutionizing communication in battle royale games. This feature allows players to mark specific locations and loot without the need for voice chat. The game’s fast-paced action, unique character abilities, and polished mechanics helped it amass a staggering 50 million players within its first month, solidifying its status as an innovator in the genre.
Tetris 99 presents a completely distinct take on the battle royale genre. Exclusive to the Nintendo Switch, it challenges players to not only clear lines but also to strategically send “garbage blocks” to opponents’ Tetris games. This creates a fiendishly complex puzzle for all players involved, delivering a uniquely intense experience in the realm of battle royale gaming. Despite its departure from traditional conventions, Tetris 99 remains immensely popular among players.
Esports and streaming
Fortnite and PUBG made their mark in esports, hosting world championships. Battle royale’s pacing, emphasizing exploration and strategy, lends itself well to streaming. Streamers like Ninja and Nickmercs have gained massive followings, turning gaming into a highly entertaining spectator sport.
The battle royale genre has not only become a gaming phenomenon but has also transformed the way we engage with video games. From its humble mod origins to the global stage of esports and streaming, battle royale games continue to shape the future of gaming, promising hours of entertainment for players and viewers alike.
If you’re an avid fan of the genre, make sure to check out our articles on the battle royale games like how to get the Dragon Breath Sniper in Fortnite and where to find a secret room key in PUBG to keep a competitive edge.